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1231-16 New York Times Crossword Answers 31 Dec 16, Saturday



QuickLinks:
Solution to today's crossword in the New York Times
Solution to today's SYNDICATED New York Times crossword in all other publications
Solution to today's New York Times crossword found online at the Seattle Times website
Jump to a complete list of today's clues and answers

CROSSWORD SETTER: Jeff Chen
THEME: None
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 25m 46s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 2

  • LANE (line)
  • PELHAM (Pelhim)

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

13. Preservers of plant specimens : HERBARIA
A herbarium is a collection of dried plants, or the room in which the collection is stored. A herbarium that specializes in the collection of wood specimens is known as a xylarium. A collection limited to plants that are cultivated is known as a hortorium.

16. Vivaldi's birthplace : VENICE
The city of Venice in northeast Italy is built in a saltwater lagoon on the Adriatic Coast, on 117 small islands. The classic transportation along the waterways is the gondola, but this is really only used for tourists these days, as well as on ceremonial occasions. The locals rely on the motorized water-buses.

Antonio Vivaldi was one of the great composers of the Baroque period. He achieved fame and success within in his own lifetime, notoriety that faded soon after he died. Vivaldi’s music has reemerged in recent decades and I am sure everyone is familiar with at least part of his most famous composition, the violin concerto called “The Four Seasons”. Vivaldi was nicknamed “The Red Priest” because he was indeed a priest, and he had red hair.

18. Manatee's order, whose name comes from Greek myth : SIRENIA
Manatees, also known as sea cows, are very large marine mammals that can grow to 12 feet in length. The manatee is believed to have evolved from four-legged land mammals and probably shares a common ancestor with the elephant. Manatees belong to the order Sirenia, after the sirens of Greek mythology. The legend is that lonely sailors mistook sea cows for mermaids or sirens.

20. Exposed part of a deal : UPCARD
Stud poker is the name given to many variants of poker, all characterized by the dealer giving each player a mix of cards face-down and face-up. The cards facing upwards are called “upcards”. The cards facing downwards are called “hole cards”, cards only visible to the individual who holds that particular hand. This gives rise to the phrase “ace in the hole”, a valuable holding that only the player with the ace is aware of.

23. Oscar composition, mostly : TIN
Legend has it that actor Emilio Fernández was the model for the Oscar statuette. Cedric Gibbons, art director at MGM, created the design and supposedly convinced a reluctant Fernández to pose nude for “Oscar”.

26. Boy's name that's a hardware item : BRAD
A “brad” is a slender wire nail with a relatively small head that is typically used to “tack” pieces of wood together, to fasten either temporarily or with minimal damage to the wood. Nowadays, brads are commonly applied using a nail gun.

27. Cosplay and fanfic are parts of it : NERD CULTURE
Cosplay (costume play) and fanfic (fan fiction).

29. Peace Palace locale, with "The" : HAGUE
International Court of Justice (ICJ) is commonly referred to as the World Court, and is based in the Hague in the Netherlands. Housed in a building known as the Peace Palace, the ICJ is the main judicial branch of the United Nations. One of the court’s functions is to settle disputes between UN member states. The US no longer accepts the jurisdiction of the ICJ, after the court’s 1986 decision that the US’s covert war against Nicaragua was in violation of international law. The UN Security Council is charged with enforcing ICJ rulings, and so the US used its veto power in the Nicaragua v. United States case.

44. Pottery Barn stock : LINENS
Pottery Barn is a chain of home furnishing stores that has been around since 1949. Not my kind of store, quite frankly ...

45. ___ lab (place for an angiogram) : CATH
An angiogram is an x-ray (usually) image taken of the circulatory system, often enhanced by the introduction of a radio-opaque “dye” into the bloodstream.

47. Speedsters : HOT RODS
A “hot rod” is an American car that has been modified for speed by installing a larger than normal engine. A “street rod” is generally a more comfortable type of “hot rod”, with the emphasis less on the engine and more on custom paint jobs and interiors. By definition, a street rod must be based on an automobile design that originated prior to 1949.

49. Manhattan topper : CHERRY
The cocktail called a Manhattan is made from whiskey, sweet vermouth and Angostura bitters. I make my own version of a Brandy Manhattan, using brandy, sweet vermouth and orange bitters.

54. "Golden Boy" writer : ODETS
“Golden Boy” was a play written by Clifford Odets that was first performed in 1937 on Broadway. There was a film adaptation released in 1939 that starred a young William Holden. “Golden Boy” was the film that launched Holden’s career.

56. Decorticate : PARE
“To decorticate” is “to remove the cortex”. That cortex might be the bark of a tree perhaps, or even the cortex of the brain.

Down
2. The "P" of P. G. Wodehouse : PELHAM
English author P. G. Wodehouse’s full name was Sir Pelham Grenville Wodehouse. He is most famous for penning the stories about the goofy Bertie Wooster and his wise and wonderful valet Jeeves. Wodehouse moved to France in 1934, to minimize his tax liability. During WWII he was interned by the Germans for nearly a year, and made broadcasts to the US for the enemy from Germany. Even though his on air talks were relatively apolitical and humorous, they were not well received in his homeland. Wodehouse never returned to England, and died in New York in 1975.

3. Noble Italian family name shared by three popes : ORSINI
The Orsinis were a very influential Italian noble family in medieval and renaissance times. Included in the Orsini line were three popes: Celestine III (1191-1198), Nicholas III (1277-1280) and Benedict XIII (1724-1730).

7. Justin who directed "Star Trek Beyond" : LIN
Justin Lin is an American movie director who was born in Taiwan. Lin directed three of the six films in “The Fast and the Furious” series. I’m not really a fan of “The Fast and the Furious” films ...

8. Analogues of circuit solicitors, informally : DAS
District Attorney (DA)

11. An emoticon is a simple form of it : ASCII ART
ASCII (American Standard Code for Information Interchange) lists codes for 32 "control" characters, as well as the 95 printable characters. These binary codes are the way that our computers can understand what we mean when we type say a letter, or a number. Unicode is a more contemporary standard, and is like “Ascii on steroids”, encompassing more characters.

12. Chain of seven countries : THE ANDES
The Andes range is the longest continuous chain of mountains in the world, running right down the length of the west coast of South America for about 4,300 miles. The highest peak in the Andes is Mt. Aconcagua, at an elevation of 22,841 feet. Interestingly, the peak of Mt. Chimborazo in Ecuador is the furthest point on the Earth's surface from the center of the planet. That's because of the equatorial "bulge" around the Earth's "waist".

14. A maverick doesn't follow it : HERD
The concept of being one's own person, going it alone, is popularly known as being a "maverick". In the days of open range ranching, a maverick was a steer that didn't carry a brand. An unbranded animal was usually the result of a branded animal giving birth on the open range, with the young growing up without having being captured and claimed by an owner. The use of the name "maverick" comes from Texas rancher Samuel Maverick, who refused to brand his cattle. He stated that he did not want to inflict pain on his cattle, and so laid claim to any cattle on the range that weren't branded. His stubborn refusal to cooperate with the neighboring ranchers gave rise to our modern description of a single-minded individual as a "maverick".

16. Knowledge of fine arts : VIRTU
“Virtu” are objects of art or curios. The same term is used to describe an interest in and knowledge of such objects. The term comes from the Latin “virtus” meaning “virtue, goodness, manliness”. The idea is that “virtu” is an appreciation for the “goodness” of such art.

25. Website with "The Next Big Thing" videos : CNET
c|net is an excellent technology website. c|net started out in 1994 as a television network specializing in technology news. The host of “American Idol”, Ryan Seacrest, started off his career as host of a c|net show.

26. One of about 3,412 in a kW-h : BTU
In the world of heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC), the power of a heating or cooling unit can be measured in British Thermal Units (BTUs). This dated unit is the amount of energy required to heat a pound of water so that the water's temperature increases by one degree Fahrenheit.

29. Circus ring? : HULA HOOP
Hula hoops were a big craze in the 1950s, but they have been around in various forms at least since the year 500 BCE!

32. The TV network in "Network" : UBS
The movie "Network" was released in 1976. It was directed by Sidney Lumet and stars Peter Finch in his final role, for which he won a posthumous Academy Award. That Oscar for Peter Finch was remarkable in that it was the first time the Best Actor award had been won after the actor passed away, and it was also the first time it had been won by an Australian.

41. Besmirched : TARRED
“Besmirch” is a derivative of “smirch”, with both words meaning to “make dirty”. In particular, to besmirch is to sully someone's reputation.

52. One standing in an alley : PIN
Bowling has been around for an awfully long time. The oldest known reference to the game is in Egypt, where pins and balls were found in an ancient tomb that is over 5,000 years old. The first form of the game to come to America was nine-pin bowling, which had been very popular in Europe for centuries. In 1841 in Connecticut, nine-pin bowling was banned due to its association with gambling. Supposedly, an additional pin was added to get around the ban, and ten-pin bowling was born.

53. Classification system used in some banks : ABO
The most important grouping of blood types is the ABO system. Blood is classified as either A, B, AB or O, depending on the type of antigens on the surface of the red blood cells. A secondary designation of blood is the Rh factor, in which other antigens are labelled as either positive or negative. When a patient receives a blood transfusion, ideally the donor blood should be the same type as that of the recipient, as incompatible blood cells can be rejected. However, blood type O-neg can be accepted by recipients with all blood types, A, B, AB or O, and positive or negative. Hence someone with O-neg blood type is called a “universal donor”.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Join, as two pieces of metal by application of heat and pressure : SPOT-WELD
9. Scrap : SPAT
13. Preservers of plant specimens : HERBARIA
14. Glaring : HARSH
15. People on the wrong end of a landslide : ALSO-RANS
16. Vivaldi's birthplace : VENICE
17. Says "But I don't wanna!," say : WHINES
18. Manatee's order, whose name comes from Greek myth : SIRENIA
19. Part of a basketball court : LANE
20. Exposed part of a deal : UPCARD
23. Oscar composition, mostly : TIN
24. Bad actor : MISCREANT
26. Boy's name that's a hardware item : BRAD
27. Cosplay and fanfic are parts of it : NERD CULTURE
29. Peace Palace locale, with "The" : HAGUE
33. A 43-Across may end one : SET
34. Some next of kin : AUNTS
35. Hypothetical miracle material : UNOBTAINIUM
38. Live-streaming problems : LAGS
39. Strips to pieces? : BACON BITS
43. Court coup : ACE
44. Pottery Barn stock : LINENS
45. ___ lab (place for an angiogram) : CATH
47. Speedsters : HOT RODS
49. Manhattan topper : CHERRY
51. Like evidence gathered in some stings : ON TAPE
52. Delivery of supplies by air, in a way : PARADROP
54. "Golden Boy" writer : ODETS
55. "To the best of my recollection ..." : I BELIEVE ...
56. Decorticate : PARE
57. "Hardly a surprise" : NO WONDER

Down
1. Nice thing after getting the cold shoulder? : SHAWL
2. The "P" of P. G. Wodehouse : PELHAM
3. Noble Italian family name shared by three popes : ORSINI
4. Alternatives to rumps : T-BONES
5. Enamel finish? : -WARE
6. Part of a not-so-clean slate : ERASURE
7. Justin who directed "Star Trek Beyond" : LIN
8. Analogues of circuit solicitors, informally : DAS
9. Not around the bend : SANE
10. Publishing order : PRINT RUN
11. An emoticon is a simple form of it : ASCII ART
12. Chain of seven countries : THE ANDES
14. A maverick doesn't follow it : HERD
16. Knowledge of fine arts : VIRTU
18. Approve : SANCTION
21. Losing side in the Battle of Marathon, 490 B.C. : PERSIANS
22. Beat : CADENCE
25. Website with "The Next Big Thing" videos : CNET
26. One of about 3,412 in a kW-h : BTU
28. Term of endearment : LAMB
29. Circus ring? : HULA HOOP
30. 1997 adventure/horror film that takes place in the Amazon : ANACONDA
31. Pistol : GO-GETTER
32. The TV network in "Network" : UBS
36. Stomach : ABIDE
37. Turn loose? : UNSCREW
40. Stuck at a lodge, say : ICED IN
41. Besmirched : TARRED
42. Gave it the old college try : STROVE
44. Removes as superfluous : LOPS
46. Hopped up : HYPER
48. Gauge : RATE
50. Dome light? : HALO
52. One standing in an alley : PIN
53. Classification system used in some banks : ABO


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1230-16 New York Times Crossword Answers 30 Dec 16, Friday



QuickLinks:
Solution to today's crossword in the New York Times
Solution to today's SYNDICATED New York Times crossword in all other publications
Solution to today's New York Times crossword found online at the Seattle Times website
Jump to a complete list of today's clues and answers

CROSSWORD SETTER: Patrick Berry
THEME: None
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 14m 27s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

15. Possible rap sheet entry : HOLDUP JOB
A rap sheet is a criminal record. “Rap” is a slang term dating back to the 1700s that means “blame, responsibility” as in “to take the rap” and “to beat the rap”. This usage morphed into “rap sheet” in the early 1900s.

21. Sears buyer of 2005 : KMART
Kmart is the third largest discount store chain in the world, behind Wal-Mart and Target. The company was founded by S. S. Kresge in 1899, with the first outlets known as S. S. Kresge stores. The first “Kmart” stores opened in 1962. Kmart is famous for its promotions known as “blue light specials”, a program first introduced in 1965 and discontinued in 1991. I remember being in a Kmart store soon after coming to live in the US. That evening an employee installed a light stand an aisle away from me, switched on a flashing blue light and there was some unintelligible announcement over the loudspeaker system. I had no idea what was going on …

Richard Sears was a station agent on the railroad. In the late 1800s, he bought up a shipment of unwanted watches that was left at his depot and sold the watches to other agents up and down the line. He was so successful that he ordered more watches and then came up with the idea of using a catalog to promote more sales. The catalog idea caught on, and his success allowed Sears to open retail locations in 1925. By the mid 1900s, Sears was the biggest retailer in the whole country.

22. Military movements : SORTIES
A “sortie” is an attack by an armed unit, usually a breakout by forces that are besieged, The term “sortie” comes directly from French and means “a going out”. “Sortie” is also used for a mission by a combat aircraft.

31. Lingerie fabric : SATIN
The material known as “satin” takes its name from “Zayton”, the medieval Arabic name for the Chinese port city of Quanzhou. Quanzhou was used for the export of large amounts of silk to Europe.

“Lingerie” is a French term, but as used in France it just means any underwear, worn by either males or females. In English we use “lingerie” to describe alluring underclothing worn by women. The term “lingerie” comes into English via the French word “linge” meaning “washables”, and ultimately from the Latin “linum”, meaning “linen”. We tend not to pronounce the word correctly in English, either here in the US or across the other side of the Atlantic. The French pronunciation is more like “lan-zher-ee”, as opposed to “lon-zher-ay” (American) and “lon-zher-ee” (British).

37. Richard who won a Tony for playing Don Quixote : KILEY
The full name of Cervantes’s novel is “The Ingenious Hidalgo Don Quixote of La Mancha”. In the story, Don Quixote is a retired country gentleman who heads out as a knight-errant and who renames himself Don Quixote of la Mancha. In his mind he designates a neighboring farm girl called Aldonza Lorenzo as his lady love, and renames her Dulcinea del Toboso.

39. Man and others : PRIMATES
The most widely distributed genus of primates on the planet is Homo, a genus containing only one species, namely man (Home sapiens). The second most populous genus of primates is Macaca, the Old World monkeys known familiarly as macaques. Macaques can be found all across Asia, from Japan to Afghanistan, as well as in North Africa. Some of the most famous macaques live in a colony on the Rock of Gibraltar in the Mediterranean.

41. "Zero Dark Thirty" org. : CIA
“Zero Dark Thirty” is a film directed by Kathryn Bigelow that tells of the long but ultimately successful hunt for Osama bin Laden. I found one aspect of this film to be particularly uplifting, namely the central role played by a remarkable CIA officer who was a woman operating against the odds in a man’s world.

43. Shep Smith's channel : FOX NEWS
Shep Smith is a television journalist and host with Fox News. Smith has been hosting “Shepard Smith Reporting” on Fox since 2013.

48. Source of riches : TROVE
The term “treasure trove” comes from the Anglo-French “tresor trové “ meaning “found treasure”.

50. ___ Bete (honor society member, informally) : PHI
Phi Beta Kappa was the first collegiate Greek fraternity in the US, founded in 1776 at the College of William and Mary. The organization served as a model for future collegiate fraternities and sororities, although in the 19th century Phi Beta Kappa distanced itself from the fraternal focus and transformed into the honor society that it is today, recognizing academic excellence. The initials Phi Beta Kappa stand for “philosophia biou kybernētēs”, which translates into “philosophy is the guide of life”. The symbol of the Phi Beta Kappa Society is a golden key.

51. Thomas who is known as the Queen of Memphis Soul : CARLA
Carla Thomas is a singer from Memphis, Tennessee who is referred to as the Queen of Memphis Soul. Carla’s father was R&B singer Rufus Thomas.

52. Big Apple power supplier : CON EDISON
Apparently the first published use of the term “Big Apple” to describe New York City dates back to 1909. Edward Martin wrote the following in his book “The Wayfarer in New York”:
Kansas is apt to see in New York a greedy city. . . . It inclines to think that the big apple gets a disproportionate share of the national sap.
Over ten years later, the term “big apple” was used as a nickname for racetracks in and around New York City. However, the concerted effort to “brand” the city as the Big Apple had to wait until the seventies and was the work of the New York Convention and Visitors Bureau.

54. Hatch in the Capitol : ORRIN
Orrin Hatch is a Republican Senator from Utah. Hatch is also quite the musician, and plays the piano, violin and organ. He has composed various compositions, including a song called "Heal Our Land" that was played at the 2005 inauguration of President George W. Bush.

55. Stadium whose first home run was hit by Mickey Mantle : ASTRODOME
The Houston baseball team changed its name to the Astros (sometimes “'Stros”) from the Colt .45s in 1965 when they started playing in the Astrodome. The Astrodome was so called in recognition of the city’s long association with the US space program. The Astros moved from the National League to the American League starting in the 2013 season.

Mickey Mantle only played professional baseball for the one team, spending 18 years with the New York Yankees. Mickey Mantle memorabilia is highly prized, especially since he retired from the game in 1969, and even more so since he died in 1995. The only other player memorabilia said to command a higher price is Babe Ruth’s. Mantle holds the record for the most career home runs by a switch hitter, as well as the most World Series home runs.

Down
1. Vouchers : CHITS
A chit is a note or a short letter. The term tends to be used these days in the sense of an amount owed (as in a poker game). The word used to be “chitty”, which is now obsolete but was closer to the original Hindi term. I feel a tad obsolete myself because when we are at school we would be excused class if we had a “chitty”.

2. "O, I am fortune's fool!" speaker : ROMEO
“O, I am Fortune’s fool” is a line from William Shakespeare’s play “Romeo and Juliet”. The words are uttered by Romeo after he kills Tybalt, Juliet’s cousin, in a duel. Romeo knows that he has made a bad mistake, and tells everyone so. Sure enough, things go downhill for him and Juliet for the remainder of the play.

3. Bovine product mascot : ELMER
Elsie the Cow is the mascot of the Borden Company. Elsie first appeared at the New York World's Fair in 1939, introduced to symbolize the perfect dairy product. She is so famous and respected that she has been awarded the degrees of Doctor of Bovinity, Doctor fo Human Kindness and Doctor of Ecownomics. Elsie was also given a husband named Elmer the Bull. Elmer eventually moved over to the chemical division of Borden where he gave his name to Elmer's Glue.

4. Sports drink suffix : -ADE
Gatorade was developed at the University of Florida by a team of researchers at the request of the school's football team. And so, Gatorade is named after the Gators football team.

7. R&B group with a series of 1970s hits, with "the" : O’JAYS
The O’Jays are an R&B group from Canton, Ohio. They came together in 1963 as a band of five singers and are still performing today, although now only as a trio. The band took the name of the O’Jays as a tribute to a radio disk jockey called Eddie O’Jay who was big in Cleveland at the time. The biggest hit for the O’Jays is “Love Train”, released in 1972.

9. King's collaborator : ABERNATHY
Ralph Abernathy was the closest friend of Martin Luther King, Jr.

10. Alan who played the title role in "Rasputin" : RICKMAN
Alan Rickman was a marvelous English actor, famous for playing bad guy Hans Gruber in the original “Die Hard” film, Severus Snape in the “Harry Potter” series and my personal favorite, Eamon de Valera in “Michael Collins”. Sadly, Rickman passed away in January 2016, after which fans created a memorial under the “Platform 9¾” sign in London’s Kings Cross Railway Station, from where the Hogwarts Express is said to depart in the “Harry Potter” universe.

12. Good person in a parable : SAMARITAN
“The Good Samaritan” is a parable told by Jesus that can be read in the Gospel of Luke. According to the story, a Jewish traveler is robbed and beaten and left for dead at the side of the road. A priest happens by and sees the poor man, but does not stop to help. A fellow Jew also passes and refuses to help. A third man stops and gives aid. This kind person is a Samaritan, a native of Samaria. Back then Jewish and Samarian people were said to generally despise each other, and yet here a detested creature gives aid. Jesus told to the story to a self-righteous lawyer, the intent being (I assume) to shake up his self-righteousness.

14. "Isn't that so?," to Rousseau : N'EST-CE PAS?
"N'est-ce pas" is a French expression, often added to the end of a statement, turning it into a question. It translates into "isn't that so?"

23. Dash gauge : TACH
The tachometer takes its name from the Greek word “tachos” meaning “speed”. A tachometer measures engine revolutions per minute (rpm).

Back in the 1800s, “dashboard” was the name given to a board placed at the front of a carriage to stop mud from “dashing” against the passengers in the carriage, mud that was kicked up by the hoofs of the horses. Quite interesting …

27. Wand wielders : MAGES
Mage is an archaic word for a magician.

29. "Try now, pay later" products : SHAREWARE
Shareware is software that is distributed for free, although there is usually a request to pay non-compulsory license fee.

30. Player with the most seasons (10) on a World Series-winning team : YOGI BERRA
Yogi Berra is regarded by many as the greatest catcher ever to play in Major League Baseball, and has to be America's most celebrated "author" of malapropisms. Here are some greats:
  • It ain't over till it's over.
  • 90% of the game is half mental.
  • Nobody goes there anymore. It's too crowded.
  • When you come to a fork in the road, take it.
  • It's déjà vu all over again.
  • Always go to other people's funerals, otherwise they won't go to yours.
  • A nickel ain't worth a dime anymore.

31. Nickname for U.S. president #30 : SILENT CAL
President Calvin Coolidge, the only US President to have been born on July 4th, was known as a man of few words. It was while he was serving as Vice-President to in the administration of Warren G. Harding, that Coolidge earned the nickname “Silent Cal”. There is a famous story told about Coolidge’s reticence that I would love to think is true, attributed to the poet Dorothy Parker. Sitting beside him at dinner, she remarked to him, "Mr. Coolidge, I've made a bet against a fellow who said it was impossible to get more than two words out of you." His famous reply: "You lose."

34. Post-W.W. II rival of Stalin : TITO
Marshal Josip Broz Tito led the Yugoslav resistance during WWII. After the war, he led the country as Prime Minister and then President.

Joseph Stalin was Soviet Premier from 1941 to 1953. Stalin's real name was Ioseb Besarionis dze Jughashvili. Not long after the Bolshevik Revolution of 1903 he adopted the name “Stalin”, which is the Russian word for “steel”.

35. "Gorillas in the Mist" writer Fossey : DIAN
Dian Fossey carried out her famous study of gorilla populations in the mountain forests of Rwanda (NB: it was Jane Goodall that worked with chimpanzees). Sadly, Fossey was found dead in her cabin in Rwanda in 1986, murdered in her bedroom, her skull split open by a machete. The crime was never solved.

37. Dorothy and Auntie Em, for two : KANSANS
In “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz”, Dorothy lives with her Aunt Em and Uncle Henry.

40. Fish in "The Old Man and the Sea" : MARLIN
If you've read Ernest Hemingway's "The Old Man And The Sea" (maybe first at school, like me!) you'll likely remember it as a quick read as it is a novella, although it might be better described as a "long short story". It was first published in 1952, the last major work that Hemingway had published in his lifetime. That first publication was as a story in "Life Magazine", and it was such a hit that the magazine sold 5 million copies in the first two days. "The Old Man and the Sea" won a Pulitzer in 1952 and two years later the title was cited when Hemingway was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature.

44. Market town in Surrey : EPSOM
The Surrey town of Epsom in England is most famous for its racecourse (Epsom Downs), at which is run the Epsom Derby every year, one of the three races that make up the English Triple Crown. We also come across Epsom salt from time to time. Epsom salt is magnesium sulfate, originally prepared by boiling down mineral waters. Epsom was indeed a spa town at one time. The town is also home to Epsom College, an English “public school” (which actually means “private, and expensive”). One of Epsom’s “old boys” was the Hollywood actor Stewart Granger.

46. Right triangle ratios : SINES
The most familiar trigonometric functions are sine (sin), cosine (cos) and tangent (tan). Each of these is a ratio, a ratio of two sides of a right-angled triangle. The reciprocal of these three functions are cosecant, secant, and cotangent. The reciprocal functions are simply the inverted ratios, the inverted sine (cosec = 1/sin), cosine (sec = 1/cos) and tangent (cot = 1/tan).

49. Sub ___ (confidentially) : ROSA
“Sub rosa” is a Latin term that translates literally as “under the rose”. The term is used to denote confidentiality, as the rose has been a symbol of secrecy since ancient times.

53. Gilbert and Sullivan's "Princess ___" : IDA
“Princess Ida; or, Castle Adamant” is a Gilbert & Sullivan comic opera. It was first performed in 1884 at the Savoy Theatre in London that was famous for staging the duo’s works.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. It's soft and sweet : CREAM SODA
10. Turpentine source : RESIN
15. Possible rap sheet entry : HOLDUP JOB
16. Empty-headed : INANE
17. Pressing : IMMEDIATE
18. Has a rough time? : CAMPS
19. Buttonless garment : TEE
20. Appliance in a fast-food restaurant : FRYER
21. Sears buyer of 2005 : KMART
22. Military movements : SORTIES
24. Like some passcodes : NUMERIC
26. Dumbbell : ASS
27. "Goodness gracious!" : MAN ALIVE!
28. Defeat by playing mental games, with "out" : PSYCH
31. Lingerie fabric : SATIN
32. Make use of : TAP
33. Dread line? : UH-OH
34. Too small, possibly : TIGHT
35. Spreadsheet filler : DATA
36. Disreputable periodical : RAG
37. Richard who won a Tony for playing Don Quixote : KILEY
38. Ticket prices? : FINES
39. Man and others : PRIMATES
41. "Zero Dark Thirty" org. : CIA
42. Site of the Cedar Revolution : LEBANON
43. Shep Smith's channel : FOX NEWS
47. Fancy wine vessels : EWERS
48. Source of riches : TROVE
50. ___ Bete (honor society member, informally) : PHI
51. Thomas who is known as the Queen of Memphis Soul : CARLA
52. Big Apple power supplier : CON EDISON
54. Hatch in the Capitol : ORRIN
55. Stadium whose first home run was hit by Mickey Mantle : ASTRODOME
56. Disengages : WEANS
57. Families share them : LAST NAMES

Down
1. Vouchers : CHITS
2. "O, I am fortune's fool!" speaker : ROMEO
3. Bovine product mascot : ELMER
4. Sports drink suffix : -ADE
5. Swimmer in cloudy water : MUDFISH
6. Skyline points : SPIRES
7. R&B group with a series of 1970s hits, with "the" : O’JAYS
8. Show adoration : DOTE
9. King's collaborator : ABERNATHY
10. Alan who played the title role in "Rasputin" : RICKMAN
11. Smooth finish : ENAMEL
12. Good person in a parable : SAMARITAN
13. Confidentially : IN PRIVATE
14. "Isn't that so?," to Rousseau : N'EST-CE PAS?
23. Dash gauge : TACH
25. Infantry division : UNIT
27. Wand wielders : MAGES
28. Fountain drink containing grape juice and vanilla ice cream : PURPLE COW
29. "Try now, pay later" products : SHAREWARE
30. Player with the most seasons (10) on a World Series-winning team : YOGI BERRA
31. Nickname for U.S. president #30 : SILENT CAL
34. Post-W.W. II rival of Stalin : TITO
35. "Gorillas in the Mist" writer Fossey : DIAN
37. Dorothy and Auntie Em, for two : KANSANS
38. Obsessed with : FIXED ON
40. Fish in "The Old Man and the Sea" : MARLIN
41. Like cloak-and-dagger operations : COVERT
43. Lots of characters? : FONTS
44. Market town in Surrey : EPSOM
45. Mock-innocent question : WHO? ME?
46. Right triangle ratios : SINES
49. Sub ___ (confidentially) : ROSA
53. Gilbert and Sullivan's "Princess ___" : IDA


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1229-16 New York Times Crossword Answers 29 Dec 16, Thursday



QuickLinks:
Solution to today's crossword in the New York Times
Solution to today's SYNDICATED New York Times crossword in all other publications
Solution to today's New York Times crossword found online at the Seattle Times website
Jump to a complete list of today's clues and answers

CROSSWORD SETTER: Kevan Choset
THEME: Charles
Today’s themed answers are titles held by Charles, heir to the British throne:
20A. One title for this puzzle's subject, spelled in order by the circled letters : EARL OF CHESTER
28A. Another title for this puzzle's subject : BARON OF RENFREW
45A. Another title for this puzzle's subject : DUKE OF CORNWALL
54A. Another title for this puzzle's subject : PRINCE OF WALES
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 19m 11s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. Many a SpaceX worker: Abbr. : ENGR
SpaceX (Space Exploration Technologies Corporation) is a space transportation company that was founded in 2002 by Elon Musk, veteran of PayPal and Tesla Motors. In 2012, SpaceX became the first private concern to send a spacecraft to the International Space Station. Apparently, SpaceX is the lowest-price player in the game.

5. Small drum : TABOR
A tabor is a portable snare drum that is played with one hand. The tabor is usually suspended by a strap from one arm, with the other hand free to beat the drum. It is often played as an accompaniment for a fife or other small flutes. The word "tabor" comes from "tabwrdd", the Welsh word for “drum”.

16. With 14-Across, "Meet the Parents" co-star : TERI …
(14A. See 16-Across : … POLO)
Teri Polo’s most prominent role on the big screen was Pam Focker in “Meet the Fockers” and its sequel. Pam is the wife of the character played by Ben Stiller. Polo also played the wife of Presidential candidate Matt Santos in “The West Wing”.

23. Foreign title of address : SRI
“Sri” is a title of respect for a male in India.

32. 180 : UEY
Hang a uey, make a u-turn.

33. Narrow estuaries : RIAS
A drowned valley might be called a ria or a fjord, both formed as sea level rises. A ria is a drowned valley created by river erosion, and a fjord is a drowned valley created by glaciation.

35. Broccoli ___ : RABE
Broccoli Rabe is perhaps better known as rapini, and is a vegetable often used in Mediterranean cuisines. It is quite delicious sauteed with garlic ...

38. Jazz with rapid chord changes : BOP
“Bop” is a shortened form of “bebop”, a jazz style that dates back to the early 1940s.

39. Turntable speeds, briefly : RPMS
Revolutions per minute (rpm)

40. Crimson rival : ELI
Elihu Yale was a wealthy merchant born in Boston in 1649. Yale worked for the British East India Company, and for many years served as governor of a settlement at Madras (now Chennai) in India. After India, Yale took over his father’s estate near Wrexham in Wales. It was while resident in Wrexham that Yale responded to a request for financial support for the Collegiate School of Connecticut in 1701. He sent the school a donation, which was used to erect a new building in New Haven that was named “Yale” in his honor. In 1718, the whole school was renamed to “Yale College”. To this day, students of Yale are nicknamed “Elis”, again honoring Elihu.

Not only is crimson the school color, “Harvard Crimson” is the name given to the athletic teams, and to the school newspaper. The school color was chosen by a vote of the student body in 1875.

43. Colonel's chain : KFC
The famous "Colonel" of Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) fame was Harland Sanders, an entrepreneur from Henryville, Indiana. Although not really a "Colonel", Sanders did indeed serve in the military. He enlisted in the Army as a private in 1906 at the age of 16, lying about his age. He spent the whole of his time in the Army as a soldier in Cuba. It was much later, in the 1930s, that Sanders went into the restaurant business making his specialty deep-fried chicken. By 1935 his reputation as a "character" had grown, so much so that Governor Ruby Laffoon of Kentucky gave Sanders the honorary title of "Kentucky Colonel". Later in the fifties, Sanders developed his trademark look with the white suit, string tie, mustache and goatee. When Sanders was 65 however, his business failed and in stepped Dave Thomas, the founder of Wendy's. Thomas simplified the Sanders menu, cutting it back from over a hundred items to just fried chicken and salads. That was enough to launch KFC into the fast food business. Sanders sold the US franchise in 1964 for just $2 million and moved to Canada to grow KFC north of the border. He died in 1980 and is buried in Louisville, Kentucky. The Colonel's secret recipe of 11 herbs and spices is indeed a trade secret. Apparently there is only one copy of the recipe, a handwritten piece of paper, written in pencil and signed by Colonel Sanders. Since 2009, the piece of paper has been locked in a computerized vault surrounded with motion detectors and security cameras.

50. 1998 Masters champion Mark : O’MEARA
Mark O'Meara is an American golfer from Goldsboro, North Carolina. He is known as one of the American players who competes in international tournaments more than most, and has a reputation as a real gentleman all around the world.

51. The last "Back to the Future" : III
In the fun 1985 movie “Back to the Future”, Marty McFly finds himself back in 1955, and is trying to get back to HIS future, which is 1985. But on the other hand, 1985 is really Marty’s present, before he went back in time. Why does time travel have to be so complicated …?

52. ___-en-Provence : AIX
Aix-en-Provence is a beautiful city in the South of France, located just 30 miles north of Marseille. I had the remarkable privilege of living in Aix for two years, definitely two of the happiest years for our family …

54. Another title for this puzzle's subject : PRINCE OF WALES
The tradition in the UK is to invest the heir-apparent to the throne with the title of Prince of Wales. Since Prince Charles is that heir today, he is called Prince of Wales and his first wife was known as Diana, Princess of Wales. Both of their children also use the title, Prince William of Wales and Prince Henry of Wales. That said, ever since Prince William's marriage, he mainly uses the title Duke of Cambridge.

61. Burkina ___ (African land) : FASO
Burkina Faso is an inland country in western Africa. The country used to be called the Republic of Upper Volta and was renamed in 1984 to Burkina Faso meaning “the land of upright people”.

62. English poet laureate Nahum : TATE
Nahum Tate was an Irish poet who became England’s poet laureate in 1692. An Irishman he may have been, but Tate had to flee his native land after passing on information to the British government about the Irish Rebellion of 1641.

63. Many a techno concert attendee : RAVER
Techno is a type of electronic dance music that originated in Detroit in the eighties. Techno involves a heavy beat in common time, and what seems to be a lot of repetition. Not for me …

64. Baseball's Felipe : ALOU
Felipe Alou is a former professional baseball player and manager. Alou managed the Montreal Expos from 1992 to 2001, and the San Francisco Giants from 2003 to 2006. Alou was born and raised in the Dominican Republic and came to the US to play for the Giants in 1955. Felipe’s brothers Matty and Jesús followed him to the US, and into Major League baseball.

65. Adderall target, briefly : ADHD
The “official” name for the condition we sometimes still refer to as “attention deficit disorder” (ADD) is “attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder” (ADHD).

Adderall is a drug used in the treatment of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) as well as narcolepsy. Adderall is also misused as a recreational drug as it is considered an aphrodisiac and a euphoriant.

67. Many a one-star Yelp review : RANT
yelp.com is a website that provides a local business directory and reviews of services. The site is sort of like Yellow Pages on steroids, and the term “yelp” is derived from “yel-low p-ages”.

Down
1. Relatives of sabers : EPEES
The sword known as an épée has a three-sided blade. The épée is similar to a foil and sabre, both of which are also thrusting weapons. However, the foil and saber have rectangular cross-sections.

3. Stepmom of Mitchell and Claire on "Modern Family" : GLORIA
“Modern Family” is a marvelous television show shown on ABC since 2009. The show’s format is that of a “mockumentary”, with the cast often addressing the camera directly. In that respect “Modern Family” resembles two other excellent shows: “The Office” and “Parks and Recreation”, both of which might also be described a “mockumentaries”.

4. Sushi plate item : ROLL
Sushi is a Japanese dish that has as its primary ingredient cooked, vinegared rice. The rice is usually topped with something, most often fish, and can be served in seaweed rolls. If you want raw fish by itself, then you have to order “sashimi”.

6. One of the Furies : ALECTO
The Furies of Greek and Roman mythology were the female personification of vengeance. They were also known as the Dirae, "the terrible". There were at least three Furies:
  • Alecto: the "unceasing"
  • Megaera: the "grudging"
  • Tisiphone: the "avenging murder"

8. Grendel in "Beowulf," e.g. : OGRE
"Beowulf" is an old epic poem from England, although the story is set in Scandinavia. Beowulf fights a battle, defending the Danish King Hrothgar from the ferocious outcast Grendel. Hrothgar had built a great hall for his people in which they could celebrate; singing, dancing and drinking lots of mead. Grendel was angered by the carousing and attacked the hall, devouring many of the incumbent warriors as they slept. A bit of an extreme reaction to noisy neighbors I'd say ...

9. Antarctic waters : ROSS SEA
The Ross Sea is a bay in the Southern Ocean of Antarctica. It was discovered by one James Ross in 1841. A more recent discovery, in the waters of the Ross Sea, was a 33 feet long giant squid that was captured in 2007.

10. The "ipso" in ipso facto : ITSELF
“Ipso facto” is Latin, meaning "by the fact itself". Ipso facto describes something that is a direct consequence of particular act, as opposed to something that is the result of some subsequent event. For example, my father was born in Dublin and was an Irish citizen ipso facto. My son was born in California and is an Irish citizen by virtue of being the son of an Irish citizen ("not" ipso facto).

26. Semester, e.g. : TERM
“Semester” is a German word from the Latin "semestris", an adjective meaning "of six months". We use the term in a system that divides an academic year into two roughly equal parts. A trimester system has three parts, and a quarter system has four.

27. Has a mortgage, say : OWES
Our word “mortgage” comes from the Old French “mort gaige” which translated as “dead pledge”. Such an arrangement was so called because the "pledge" to repay "dies" when the debt is cleared.

30. Often-swirled food, informally : FROYO
Frozen yogurt (froyo)

31. Halloween decoration letters : RIP
Rest in peace (RIP)

36. Many a college interviewer, in brief : ALUM
An “alumnus” (plural … alumni) is a graduate or former student of a school or college. The female form is “alumna” (plural … alumnae). The term comes into English from Latin, in which alumnus means foster-son or pupil. “Alum” is an informal term used for either an alumna or an alumnus.

38. "Sherlock" airer : BBC
If you’ve seen the American television show “Elementary”, you will know that it is an adaptation of the classic tales by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle that are set in the present day. “Elementary” is similar in look and feel to the excellent BBC series “Sherlock”, which stars Benedict Cumberbatch as a modern-day Holmes. We can pick up “Sherlock” in some parts of the country as part of “Masterpiece Mystery” on PBS.

39. Record label for Miley Cyrus and Pitbull : RCA
Miley Cyrus became famous playing the Disney Channel character "Hannah Montana". Miley is the daughter of country singer Billy Ray Cyrus. When she was born, Billy Ray and his wife named their daughter "Destiny Hope", but soon they themselves calling her "Smiley" as she was always smiling as a baby, and this got shortened to Miley over time. Cute ...

Pitbull is the stage name of Cuban-American rap artist Armando Perez. Pitbull is from Miami and was born to Cuban immigrants.

44. Qualifier in texts : FWIW
For what it's worth (FWIW)

58. Educ. supporter : PTA
Parent-Teacher Association (PTA)

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Many a SpaceX worker: Abbr. : ENGR
5. Small drum : TABOR
10. Yearning : ITCH
14. See 16-Across : … POLO
15. "Send me" : I'LL GO
16. With 14-Across, "Meet the Parents" co-star : TERI ...
17. Climate change subj. : ECOL
18. Being in the dark, maybe, and others : FEARS
19. "Goes" : SAYS
20. One title for this puzzle's subject, spelled in order by the circled letters : EARL OF CHESTER
23. Foreign title of address : SRI
24. Club : BAT
25. Unloaded on : SOLD TO
28. Another title for this puzzle's subject : BARON OF RENFREW
32. 180 : UEY
33. Narrow estuaries : RIAS
34. Material in the game Minecraft : ORE
35. Broccoli ___ : RABE
38. Jazz with rapid chord changes : BOP
39. Turntable speeds, briefly : RPMS
40. Crimson rival : ELI
41. ___ Ziegler, Richard Schiff's Emmy-winning role on "The West Wing" : TOBY
43. Colonel's chain : KFC
45. Another title for this puzzle's subject : DUKE OF CORNWALL
50. 1998 Masters champion Mark : O’MEARA
51. The last "Back to the Future" : III
52. ___-en-Provence : AIX
54. Another title for this puzzle's subject : PRINCE OF WALES
58. A is the best one : PLAN
60. Gladden : ELATE
61. Burkina ___ (African land) : FASO
62. English poet laureate Nahum : TATE
63. Many a techno concert attendee : RAVER
64. Baseball's Felipe : ALOU
65. Adderall target, briefly : ADHD
66. Copycats : APERS
67. Many a one-star Yelp review : RANT

Down
1. Relatives of sabers : EPEES
2. Like some extreme diets : NO-CARB
3. Stepmom of Mitchell and Claire on "Modern Family" : GLORIA
4. Sushi plate item : ROLL
5. Younger Trump daughter : TIFFANY
6. One of the Furies : ALECTO
7. Boring : BLAH
8. Grendel in "Beowulf," e.g. : OGRE
9. Antarctic waters : ROSS SEA
10. The "ipso" in ipso facto : ITSELF
11. Common pendant shape : TEAR-DROP
12. Show happiness or sadness, say : CRY
13. Word on a towel : HIS
21. High wind : OBOE
22. A lot : TONS
26. Semester, e.g. : TERM
27. Has a mortgage, say : OWES
29. Regret : RUE
30. Often-swirled food, informally : FROYO
31. Halloween decoration letters : RIP
35. Control+Y on a PC or Command+Y on a Mac : REDO
36. Many a college interviewer, in brief : ALUM
37. One may run through a park : BIKE PATH
38. "Sherlock" airer : BBC
39. Record label for Miley Cyrus and Pitbull : RCA
41. Doughnuts, in topology : TORI
42. Tied to a particular time : OF AN ERA
43. Certain assailants : KNIFERS
44. Qualifier in texts : FWIW
46. Made : EARNED
47. Disturber of the peace : RIOTER
48. Fingers-in-ears sounds : LA LA LA!
49. Rests atop : LIES ON
53. Deletes : X’S OUT
55. Show one's appreciation, in a way : CLAP
56. Wasp's nest site : EAVE
57. In the distance : AFAR
58. Educ. supporter : PTA
59. Little guy : LAD


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1228-16 New York Times Crossword Answers 28 Dec 16, Wednesday



QuickLinks:
Solution to today's crossword in the New York Times
Solution to today's SYNDICATED New York Times crossword in all other publications
Solution to today's New York Times crossword found online at the Seattle Times website
Jump to a complete list of today's clues and answers

CROSSWORD SETTER: Brendan Emmett Quigley
THEME: The Carpenters
Today’s themed answers are names of celebrities, each of which includes a word associated with CARPENTRY:
35A. Pop group suggested by 17-, 25-, 47- and 58-Across : THE CARPENTERS

17A. Player of Frodo in "The Lord of the Rings" : ELIJAH WOOD
25A. "The Good War" Pulitzer Prize winner : STUDS TERKEL
47A. Boston Celtics coach beginning in 2013 : BRAD STEVENS
58A. Detective whose first book was "I, the Jury" : MIKE HAMMER
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 7m 58s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. Some pears : BOSCS
Bosc is a cultivar of the European Pear grown in the northwest of the United States. The Bosc is that pear with a skin the color of a potato, with a long neck. I always seem to use the potato as my point of reference. How Irish am I …?

6. Joyous wedding dance : HORA
The hora is a circle dance that originated in the Balkans. It was brought to Israel by Romanian settlers, and is often performed to traditional, Israeli folk songs. The hora (also horah) is a regular sight at Jewish weddings. Sometimes the honoree at an event is raised on a chair during the hora.

10. Lethal injection providers? : ASPS
The asp is a venomous snake found in the Nile region of Africa. It is so venomous that the asp was used in ancient Egypt and Greece as a means of execution. Cleopatra observed such executions noting that the venom brought on sleepiness without any painful spasms. When the great queen opted to commit suicide, the asp was therefore her chosen method.

14. Electrified, as a Christmas tree : LIT UP
The custom of decorating trees at Christmas seems to have originated in Renaissance Germany. Those first trees were placed in guildhalls and were decorated with sweets and candy for the apprentices and children. After the Protestant Reformation, the Christmas tree became an alternative in Protestant homes for the Roman Catholic Christmas cribs. The Christmas tree tradition was imported into Britain by the royal family because of its German heritage. That tradition spread from Britain into North America.

15. Poet who wrote "If you want to be loved, be lovable" : OVID
The Roman poet Publius Ovidius Naso is today known simply as Ovid. Ovid is usually listed alongside the two other great Roman poets: Horace and Virgil.

16. Many a hockey shot : SLAP
A slapshot in ice hockey involves slapping the ice just behind the puck with the stick, causing the stick to bend and store up extra energy. When the stick finally hits the puck, all that extra energy is released along with the energy from the swing resulting in the hardest shot in hockey.

17. Player of Frodo in "The Lord of the Rings" : ELIJAH WOOD
Elijah Wood is an American actor who is most associated with his role as Frodo Baggins in the “The Lord of the Rings” trilogy.

19. Nickname for baseball manager Terry Francona : TITO
Major League Baseball (MLB) manager Terry Francona is often referred to by the nickname “Tito”. Terry father is Tito Francona, who was an MLB outfielder from 1956 to 1970.

20. Hence : ERGO
“Ergo” is the Latin word for "hence, therefore".

21. New England state sch. : URI
The University of Rhode Island (URI) was first chartered as an agricultural school, back in 1888. URI's main campus today is located in the village of Kingston.

25. "The Good War" Pulitzer Prize winner : STUDS TERKEL
Studs Terkel was an author, historian and broadcaster. Terkel won a Pulitzer in 1985 for his book “The Good War”, an oral history of WWII consisting of interviews he conducted with many ordinary people about their experiences during the conflict.

29. Runner-advancing action : HIT
That would be in baseball.

30. Land west of Eng. : IRE
The island of Ireland is politically divided between the the Republic of Ireland in the south and Northern Ireland in the north. Northern Ireland is part of the United Kingdom, and covers about one-sixth of the island.

35. Pop group suggested by 17-, 25-, 47- and 58-Across : THE CARPENTERS
Karen Carpenter was an accomplished drummer, although she only started playing drums in high school, as a member of the school band. After she graduated she started playing jazz with her brother, Richard, and a college friend. Later, she and Richard played with a group called Spectrum, and submitted many demo tapes to recording companies, but all were unsuccessful. Finally, Karen and Richard got a recording contract with A&M Records, and when they had Karen take the lead on their songs, they hit the big time and toured as the Carpenters. Sadly, Karen passed away at only 32-years-old, dying from heart failure brought on by anorexia.

39. Renaissance Faire quaff : MEAD
Mead is a lovely drink, made from fermented honey and water.

42. Real heel : CAD
Our word "cad", meaning "a person lacking in finer feelings", is a shortening of the word "cadet". "Cad" was first used for a servant, and then students at British universities used "cad" as a term for a boy from the local town. "Cad" took on its current meaning in the 1830s.

54. Worry after a raccoon attack : RABIES
“Rabies” is actually the Latin word for “madness”. The name is a good choice for the viral disease, as once the virus spreads to the brain the infected person or animal exhibits very tortured and bizarre behavior including hydrophobia, a fear of water. The virus is passed on to humans most often through a bite from an infected dog. It is curable if it is caught in time, basically before symptoms develop. Once the virus passes up the peripheral nervous system to the spine and the brain, there isn’t much that can be done.

The raccoon is native to North America. In captivity, raccoons can live to over 20 years of age, but in the wild they only live two or three years. The main causes for the shorter lifespan are hunting and road traffic.

55. Vehicle for the later years, for short? : IRA
Individual retirement account (IRA)

58. Detective whose first book was "I, the Jury" : MIKE HAMMER
Mike Hammer is the protagonist in a series of private detective novels by Mickey Spillane. The novels have been adapted for radio, television and the big screen. The actor most associated with Mike Hammer is Stacy Keach, who played the role in the TV series “Mickey Spillane’s Mike Hammer” from 1984 to 1987.

"I, The Jury" is the first novel in the "Mike Hammer" series written by Mickey Spillane. The story was filmed twice, once in 1953 with Biff Elliot playing Hammer, and again in 1982 with Armand Assante taking the lead.

62. "___ plaisir" : AVEC
“Avec plaisir” is French for “with pleasure”.

66. Collapse in frustration : PLOTZ
The verb “to plotz” is slang for “faint, collapse from surprise or exhaustion”.

Down
3. Bad mark : STIGMA
A stigma (plural “stigmata), in a social sense, is a distinguishing mark of disgrace. For example, one might have to suffer the stigma of being in prison. The term derives from the Greek “stigma”, which was a mark or brand.

4. 1981 thriller whose title character is a St. Bernard : CUJO
“Cujo” is a Stephen King horror novel, which means that I have never read it (I don’t do horror). The character Cujo is a rabid St. Bernard dog which besieges a young couple for three days in their stalled car. King tells us that he lifted the dog’s name from real life, as Cujo was the nickname of Willie Wolfe, one of the men responsible for the 1974 kidnapping of Patty Hearst by the Symbionese Liberation Army.

5. Where you might get rubbed the right way : SPA
The word “spa” migrated into English from Belgium, as Spa is the name of a municipality in the east of the country that is famous for its healing hot springs. The name “Spa” comes from the Walloon word “espa” meaning “spring, fountain”.

18. Hiking signal : HUT
The quarterback (QB) starts each play in football with a “snap” (also called a “hike”). He announces to his teammates the exact moment of the snap by calling out signals, usually including the word “hut” one or more times in a prearranged sequence.

25. Guideline for a freelancer, for short : SPEC
The term “free lance” was coined by Sir Walter Scott in his 1820 novel “Ivanhoe”, using it to describe a medieval mercenary warrior. Forty years later, a freelancer was a journalist who did work for more than one publication without a long-term commitment.

26. There might be a spat about this : SHOE
Spats are footwear accessories that cover the ankle and instep. Spats were primarily worn by men, and originally had the purpose of protecting shoes and socks from mud or rain. Eventually, spats became a feature in stylish dress. The term “spats” is a contraction of “spatterdashes”.

32. America's Cup competitor : YACHTSMAN
The America’s Cup is a trophy that has been awarded for yacht racing since 1851. It was first presented to the winner of a race around the Isle of Wight in England that was won by a schooner called “America”. The trophy was eventually renamed to “the America’s Cup” in honor of that first race winner.

37. Tudor symbol : ROSE
The Wars of the Roses was a series of civil wars fought for the throne of England between the rival Houses of Lancaster and York. Ultimately the Lancastrians emerged victorious after Henry Tudor defeated King Richard III at the Battle of Bosworth Field. Henry was crowned King Henry VII, and so began the Tudor dynasty. Henry Tudor united the rival houses by marrying his cousin Elizabeth of York. Henry VII had a relatively long reign of 23 years that lasted until his death, after which his son succeeded to the throne as Henry VIII, continuing the relatively short-lived Tudor dynasty. Henry VIII ruled from 1509 until his death in 1547. Henry VIII was the last male to lead the the House of Tudor, as his daughter Queen Elizabeth I died without issue. When Elizabeth died, the Scottish King James VI succeeded to the throne as James I of England and Ireland. James I was the first English monarch of the House of Stuart.

39. Country singer Martina : MCBRIDE
Martina McBride is a country music singer and songwriter. She is sometimes known as the “Céline Dion of Country Music”, which means nothing to me!

49. Minnesota team, for short : VIKES
The Minnesota Vikings joined the NFL as an expansion team in 1960. Founded in Minnesota, the team’s name reflects the location’s reputation as a center of Scandinavian American culture.

53. Dollar alternative : HERTZ
The Hertz car rental company was started in 1918 by Walter L. Jacobs in Chicago. He began with just twelve model T Ford cars available for rent. In 1923, the car rental operation was bought out by John D. Hertz who incorporated it into his truck and coach manufacturing company.

56. Oscar winner Jannings : EMIL
Emil Jannings was an actor from Switzerland, who also held German and Austrian citizenship. Jannings was the first person to receive an Oscar, as the star of the 1928 silent movie called “The Last Command”. He also starred opposite Marlene Dietrich in the 1930 classic “The Blue Angel”.

60. Finsteraarhorn, e.g. : ALP
The Finsteraarhorn is the highest of the Alps that lies outside of the main chain, actually in the Bernese Alps in Switzerland. The Finsteraarhorn is the ninth highest peak in the whole of the Alps.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Some pears : BOSCS
6. Joyous wedding dance : HORA
10. Lethal injection providers? : ASPS
14. Electrified, as a Christmas tree : LIT UP
15. Poet who wrote "If you want to be loved, be lovable" : OVID
16. Many a hockey shot : SLAP
17. Player of Frodo in "The Lord of the Rings" : ELIJAH WOOD
19. Nickname for baseball manager Terry Francona : TITO
20. Hence : ERGO
21. New England state sch. : URI
22. Really enjoys : IS INTO
24. Thickheaded : DIM
25. "The Good War" Pulitzer Prize winner : STUDS TERKEL
27. [Surely you can't mean ...!] : GASP!
29. Runner-advancing action : HIT
30. Land west of Eng. : IRE
31. "Yo!" : HEY!
33. "Your point being ...?" : SOO ...
34. Beat (off) : FEND
35. Pop group suggested by 17-, 25-, 47- and 58-Across : THE CARPENTERS
39. Renaissance Faire quaff : MEAD
40. Playfully obtuse, maybe : COY
41. Dog command : SIT
42. Real heel : CAD
43. Hesitating sounds : UHS
44. Part of a Facebook feed : NEWS
47. Boston Celtics coach beginning in 2013 : BRAD STEVENS
52. "Like I'm supposed to believe THAT!" : HAH!
54. Worry after a raccoon attack : RABIES
55. Vehicle for the later years, for short? : IRA
56. Gutter cleaner's work area : EAVE
57. "Game over!" : I WIN!
58. Detective whose first book was "I, the Jury" : MIKE HAMMER
61. Word with blind or expiration : DATE
62. "___ plaisir" : AVEC
63. Maximum : LIMIT
64. Looked over : EYED
65. Home in the forest : NEST
66. Collapse in frustration : PLOTZ

Down
1. Run, as colors : BLEED
2. Pumping station : OIL RIG
3. Bad mark : STIGMA
4. 1981 thriller whose title character is a St. Bernard : CUJO
5. Where you might get rubbed the right way : SPA
6. Text to which one might respond "im gr8" : HOW R U
7. Egg-shaped : OVOID
8. Where gymnast Simone Biles won Olympic gold : RIO
9. Housing expansions : ADDITIONS
10. Moving about : ASTIR
11. More sinuous and graceful : SLINKIER
12. Dressmaking aids : PATTERNS
13. Wound, as thread : SPOOLED
18. Hiking signal : HUT
23. Ready to go : SET
25. Guideline for a freelancer, for short : SPEC
26. There might be a spat about this : SHOE
28. Lose, as a coat : SHED
32. America's Cup competitor : YACHTSMAN
33. One with a phony passport, maybe : SPY
34. Big party : FETE
35. Quickly detachable : TEAR-AWAY
36. Ate something : HAD A BITE
37. Tudor symbol : ROSE
38. Some decorative containers : TINS
39. Country singer Martina : MCBRIDE
43. It can decrease value : USE
45. "Kapow!" : WHAMMO!
46. "I don't want to hear any of your excuses" : SAVE IT
48. Ate by candlelight, say : DINED
49. Minnesota team, for short : VIKES
50. Upright : ERECT
51. "Skip it" : NAH
53. Dollar alternative : HERTZ
56. Oscar winner Jannings : EMIL
59. "Now ___ heard everything" : I’VE
60. Finsteraarhorn, e.g. : ALP


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1227-16 New York Times Crossword Answers 27 Dec 16, Tuesday



QuickLinks:
Solution to today's crossword in the New York Times
Solution to today's SYNDICATED New York Times crossword in all other publications
Solution to today's New York Times crossword found online at the Seattle Times website
Jump to a complete list of today's clues and answers

CROSSWORD SETTER: Herre Schouwerwou
THEME: Double Take
Today’s themed answers is a DOUBLE-word, each of which often follows the word TAKE:
60A. Surprised reaction ... or a hint to what can precede both halves of the answers to the starred clues : DOUBLE TAKE

17A. *Valentine outline : HEART SHAPE (giving “take heart” and “take shape”)
24A. *Cost to enter a bar, maybe : COVER CHARGE (giving “take cover” & “take charge”)
32A. *Folksy : DOWN HOME (giving “take down” & “take home”)
40A. *What to do when coming face to face with a bear : BACK AWAY (giving “take back” & “take away”)
47A. *Delayed consequence : AFTEREFFECT (giving “take after” & “take effect”)
BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 7m 51s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. Tease good-naturedly : JOSH
When the verb “to josh” was first used in the 1840s, as an American slang term, it was written with a capital J. It is likely then that the term somehow comes from the proper name “Joshua”, but no one seems to remember why.

14. ___ Bunt, "On Her Majesty's Secret Service" henchwoman : IRMA
“On Her Majesty’s Secret Service” is the sixth of the James Bond series films, and the only one to star George Lazenby in the leading role. He wasn’t a great choice for 007 …

15. Gently protest : DEMUR
"To demur" is to voice opposition, to object. It can also mean to delay and has it roots in the Latin word "demorare", meaning "to delay".

16. Some music in Mumbai : RAGA
Raga isn't really a type of music, but has been described as the "tonal framework" in which Indian classical music is composed. Ravi Shankar was perhaps the most famous raga virtuoso (to us Westerners). Western rock music with a heavy Indian influence might be called raga rock.

Mumbai is the most populous city in India, and the second most populous city in the world (after Shanghai). The name of the city was changed from Bombay to Mumbai in 1995.

17. *Valentine outline : HEART SHAPE (giving “take heart” and “take shape”)
Saint Valentine’s Day was introduced by Pope Gelasius I in 496 AD to honor various martyrs with the name Valentine. However, the saint's' day was dropped by the Roman Catholic church in 1969, by Pope Paul VI. Try telling that to Hallmark though …

20. Blood line : AORTA
The aorta originates in the heart and extends down into the abdomen. It is the largest artery in the body.

23. Summer clock setting: Abbr. : DST
On the other side of the Atlantic, Daylight Saving Time (DST) is known as "summer time". The idea behind summer/daylight-savings is to move clocks forward an hour in spring (i.e. “spring forward”) and backwards in the fall (i.e. “fall back”) so that afternoons have more daylight.

27. Dress style : A-LINE
An A-line skirt is one that fits snugly at the hips and flares toward the hem.

29. "Excusez-___" : MOI
“Excusez-moi” is French for “excuse me”.

30. Controversial novel of 1955 : LOLITA
Vladimir Nabokov's novel "Lolita" has a famously controversial storyline, dealing with a middle-aged man's obsession and sexual relationship with a 12-year-old girl. Although "Lolita" is considered a classic today, after Nabokov finished it in 1953 the edgy subject matter made it impossible for him to find a publisher in the US (where Nabokov lived). In 1955, he resorted to publishing it in English at a printing house in Paris. Publication was followed by bans and seizures all over Europe. A US printing house finally took on the project in 1958, by which time the title had such a reputation that it sold exceptionally quickly. "Lolita" became the first book since "Gone with the Wind" to sell over 100,000 copies in its first three weeks in stores.

38. Nonkosher entree : HAM
According to Jewish dietary law, “kosher” food is fit to eat, and food that is not fit to eat is referred to as “treif” (or “tref”).

45. What framed Roger Rabbit? : CEL
In the world of animation, a cel is a transparent sheet on which objects and characters are drawn. In the first half of the 20th century the sheet was actually made of celluloid, giving the "cel" its name.

“Who Framed Roger Rabbit” was released in 1988, a clever film featuring cartoon characters that interact directly with human beings. The most memorable cartoon characters have to be the goofy Roger Rabbit, and the vampish Jessica Rabbit. The film is based on a novel written by Gary K. Wolf called “Who Censored Roger Rabbit?” There is a prequel floating around that has never been produced, and it’s called “Who Discovered Roger Rabbit”.

46. Watch a season's worth of episodes in one sitting, say : BINGE
I’m a big fan of binge-watching, the practice of watching perhaps two or three (even four!) episodes of a show in a row. My wife and I will often deliberately avoid watching a recommended show “live” and wait until whole series have been released on DVD or online. I’m not a big fan of “tune in next week …”

52. "Illmatic" rapper : NAS
Rapper Nas used to go by another stage name, Nasty Nas, and before that by his real name, Nasir bin Olu Dara Jones. Nas released his first album “Illmatic” in 1994, and inventively titled his fifth studio album “Stillmatic”, released in 2001. Not my cup of tea, I would say …

56. Thor or Loki : GOD
In Norse mythology, Thor was the son of Odin. Thor wielded a mighty hammer and was the god of thunder, lightning and storms. Our contemporary word “Thursday” comes from “Thor’s Day”.

Loki is a god appearing in Norse mythology. In one story about Loki, he was punished by other gods for having caused the death of Baldr, the god of light and beauty. Loki is bound to a sharp rock using the entrails of one of his sons. A serpent drips venom which is collected in a bowl, and then his wife must empty the venom onto Loki when the bowl is full. The venom causes Loki great pain, and his writhing results in what we poor mortals experience as earthquakes.

62. "Just do it" sloganeer : NIKE
The Nike slogan “Just Do It” was created in an advertising meeting in 1988. Apparently the phrase was inspired by the last words of famed criminal Gary Gilmore. Gilmore faced execution by the state of Utah in 1977 and when asked if he had any last words he simply replied, “Let’s do it”. A few minutes later, Gilmore was executed by a firing squad.

63. Doldrums feeling : ENNUI
“Ennui” is the French word for boredom, a word that we now use in English. It's one of the few French words we've imported that we haven't anglicized and actually pronounce "correctly".

The doldrums are a band of generally light winds and calms that span the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans near the equator. More formally known as the Intertropical Convergence Zone, the phenomenon occurs at the interface between the northeast and southeast trade winds. We have some to use the term “doldrums” colloquially, to describe a state of listlessness, inactivity or stagnation.

64. Forthwith, on a memo : ASAP
As soon as possible (ASAP)

Down
1. Crusade against "infidels" : JIHAD
In the Islamic tradition “jihad” is a duty, either an inner spiritual struggle to fulfill religious obligations or an outward physical struggle to defend the faith. Someone engaged in jihad is called a “mujahid” with the plural being “mujahideen”.

2. Stackable cookies : OREOS
How the Oreo cookie came to get its name seems to have been lost in the mists of time. One theory is that it comes from the French “or” meaning “gold”, a reference to the gold color of the original packing. Another suggestion is that the name is the Greek word “oreo” meaning “beautiful, nice, well-done”.

3. Know-it-all : SMART ALEC
Apparently the original "smart Alec" (sometimes “Aleck”) was Alec Hoag, a pimp, thief and confidence trickster who plied his trade in New York City in the 1840s.

4. N.H.L.'s ___ Memorial Trophy : HART
The Hart Memorial Trophy is awarded annually to the player judged to be most valuable for his team in the NHL. The award is named for Dr. David Hart, a Canadian who donated the original trophy to the league.

7. Verb that's conjugated "amo, amas, amat ..." : AMARE
Amo, amas, amat” ... I love, you love, he/she/it loves", in Latin.

10. ___ Kane, resident of soap TV's Pine Valley : ERICA
“All My Children” was the first daytime soap opera to debut in the seventies. Star of the show was Susan Lucci who played Erica Kane. The show was cancelled in 2011 after having being on the air for 41 years.

13. "Purgatorio" and "Paradiso" poet : DANTE
Dante Alighieri (usually just “Dante”) was an Italian poet of the Middle Ages. Dante’s “Divine Comedy” is widely considered to be the greatest literary work ever written in the Italian language.

31. Ingredients in a Caesar salad, to Caesar? : OVA
“Ova” is Latin for “eggs”.

The Caesar Salad was created by restaurateur Caesar Cardini at the Hotel Caesar’s in Tijuana, Mexico. The original recipe called for whole lettuce leaves that were to be lifted up by the stem and eaten with the fingers.

34. Humorist who wrote "Candy / Is dandy / But liquor / Is quicker" : OGDEN NASH
Ogden Nash was a poet from Rye, New York who is remembered for his light and quirky verse. Nash had over 500 such works published between 1931 and 1972.

41. Pastoral piece? : ACRE
At one time, an acre was defined as the amount of land a yoke of oxen could plow in a day. This was more precisely defined as a strip of land “one furrow long” (i.e. one furlong) and one furlong wide. The length of one furlong was equal to 10 chains, or 40 rods. A area of one furlong times 10 rods was one rood.

43. "___ 'em!" (canine command) : SIC
“Sic ’em” is an attack order given to a dog, instructing the animal to growl, bark or even bite. The term dates back to the 1830s, with “sic” being a variation of “seek”.

46. One getting a bite at night? : BEDBUG
Bedbugs are parasites that feed on human blood, and their preferred habitat is the mattresses on which people sleep. Bedbugs have been around for thousands of years and were almost eradicated in the 1940s. However, infestations have been increasing since then. Dogs have been trained to detect bedbugs and are used by some pest control specialists.

47. 007, e.g. : AGENT
James Bond was the creation of writer Ian Fleming. Fleming “stole” the James Bond name from an American ornithologist. The number 007 was “stolen” from the real-life, 16th century English spy called John Dee. Dee would sign his reports to Queen Elizabeth I with a stylized "007" to indicate that the reports were for “her eyes only”. There’s an entertaining miniseries that aired on BBC America called “Fleming: The Man Who Would Be Bond” that details Ian Fleming’s military career, and draws some nice parallels between Fleming’s experiences and aspirations and those of his hero James Bond. Recommended …

50. Swords in modern pentathlons : EPEES
The original pentathlon of the ancient Olympic games consisted of a foot race, wrestling, long jump, javelin and discus. When a new pentathlon was created as a sport for the modern Olympic Games, it was given the name the “modern pentathlon”. First introduced in 1912, the modern pentathlon consists of:
  1. pistol shooting
  2. épée fencing
  3. 200m freestyle swimming
  4. show jumping
  5. 3 km cross-country running

60. Mountain ___ (soda) : DEW
If you check the can, you'll see that "Mountain Dew" is now marketed as “Mtn Dew”.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Tease good-naturedly : JOSH
5. Knock down a notch : ABASE
10. Old-fashioned outburst : EGAD!
14. ___ Bunt, "On Her Majesty's Secret Service" henchwoman : IRMA
15. Gently protest : DEMUR
16. Some music in Mumbai : RAGA
17. *Valentine outline : HEART SHAPE (giving “take heart” and “take shape”)
19. Cry at the start of a poker game : I'M IN!
20. Blood line : AORTA
21. "___ you nuts?" : ARE
22. Trail for a dog : SCENT
23. Summer clock setting: Abbr. : DST
24. *Cost to enter a bar, maybe : COVER CHARGE (giving “take cover” & “take charge”)
27. Dress style : A-LINE
29. "Excusez-___" : MOI
30. Controversial novel of 1955 : LOLITA
32. *Folksy : DOWN HOME (giving “take down” & “take home”)
37. With: Fr. : AVEC
38. Nonkosher entree : HAM
39. Excited and then some : AGOG
40. *What to do when coming face to face with a bear : BACK AWAY (giving “take back” & “take away”)
43. Partial rainbow near the horizon : SUN DOG
45. What framed Roger Rabbit? : CEL
46. Watch a season's worth of episodes in one sitting, say : BINGE
47. *Delayed consequence : AFTEREFFECT (giving “take after” & “take effect”)
52. "Illmatic" rapper : NAS
55. Lose it completely : GO APE
56. Thor or Loki : GOD
57. "All ___ lost" : IS NOT
59. Follower of anything and everything : … ELSE
60. Surprised reaction ... or a hint to what can precede both halves of the answers to the starred clues : DOUBLE TAKE
62. "Just do it" sloganeer : NIKE
63. Doldrums feeling : ENNUI
64. Forthwith, on a memo : ASAP
65. Throw in the trash : TOSS
66. Club in a sand trap : WEDGE
67. Actor Ifans of "The Amazing Spider-Man" : RHYS

Down
1. Crusade against "infidels" : JIHAD
2. Stackable cookies : OREOS
3. Know-it-all : SMART ALEC
4. N.H.L.'s ___ Memorial Trophy : HART
5. Billboards, e.g. : ADS
6. Babysitter's request : BEHAVE
7. Verb that's conjugated "amo, amas, amat ..." : AMARE
8. Parent who "does it all" : SUPERMOM
9. Before, poetically : ERE
10. ___ Kane, resident of soap TV's Pine Valley : ERICA
11. Devotee of eSports : GAMER
12. Ripening, as cheese : AGING
13. "Purgatorio" and "Paradiso" poet : DANTE
18. Silent, as an agreement : TACIT
22. Clamber up, as a pole : SHIN
25. Go ___ diet : ON A
26. Dairy animal : COW
28. Spank : LICK
30. Research site : LAB
31. Ingredients in a Caesar salad, to Caesar? : OVA
32. New Year's ___ : DAY
33. Chill (with) : HANG
34. Humorist who wrote "Candy / Is dandy / But liquor / Is quicker" : OGDEN NASH
35. Sound from a 26-Down : MOO
36. Ingredient in a Caesar salad : EGG
38. Suffering from senility, say : HALF GONE
41. Pastoral piece? : ACRE
42. Tiny : WEE
43. "___ 'em!" (canine command) : SIC
44. Loosen, as a bow : UNTIE
46. One getting a bite at night? : BEDBUG
47. 007, e.g. : AGENT
48. Leaf of a book : FOLIO
49. Jobs to do : TASKS
50. Swords in modern pentathlons : EPEES
51. Lost's opposite : FOUND
53. "Good to go" : A-OKAY
54. Staircase parts : STEPS
58. Symbol to the left of a zero on a phone : STAR
60. Mountain ___ (soda) : DEW
61. More than a fib : LIE


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1226-16 New York Times Crossword Answers 26 Dec 16, Monday



QuickLinks:
Solution to today's crossword in the New York Times
Solution to today's SYNDICATED New York Times crossword in all other publications
Solution to today's New York Times crossword found online at the Seattle Times website
Jump to a complete list of today's clues and answers

CROSSWORD SETTER: Jules P. Markey
THEME: Boxing Day
We have six sets of circled letters in the today’s grid, with each set arranged in the shape of a BOX. Reading the letters of a box in a clockwise direction, we get a type of DAY:

  • 37A. Present time in England? ... or a hint to each set of shaded squares : BOXING DAY

The BOXED DAYS are, from top-left to bottom-right:

  • LEAP DAY
  • ELECTION DAY
  • SNOW DAY
  • GAME DAY
  • PATRIOTS DAY
  • HUMP DAY

BILL BUTLER’S COMPLETION TIME: 6m 15s
ANSWERS I MISSED: 0

Today's Wiki-est, Amazonian Googlies
Across

1. Go out, as the tide : EBB
Tides are caused by the gravitational pull of the moon on the oceans. At neap tide, the smaller gravitational effect of the sun cancels out some of the moon's effect. At spring tide, the sun and the moon's gravitational forces act in concert causing more extreme movement of the oceans.

10. Brewpub offering, for short : IPA
India Pale Ale (IPA) is a style of beer that originated in England. The beer was originally intended for transportation from England to India, hence the name.

13. Org. that targets traffickers : DEA
Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA)

18. Stockpiling, in a way, as feed : SILOING
“Silo” is a Spanish word that we absorbed into English, originally coming from the Greek word "siros" that described a pit in which one kept corn.

19. Letters in a personals ad : SWM
Single white male (SWM)

22. Cartoon pic : CEL
In the world of animation, a cel is a transparent sheet on which objects and characters are drawn. In the first half of the 20th century the sheet was actually made of celluloid, giving the "cel" its name.

25. TV warrior princess : XENA
The Xena character, played by New Zealander Lucy Lawless, was introduced in a made-for-TV movie called “Hercules and the Amazon Women”. Lawless reprised the role in a series called “Hercules: The Legendary Journeys”. Xena became so popular that a series was built around her character, with Lawless retained for the title role. The fictional Xena supposedly came from the “non-fictional” Greek city of Amphipolis.

26. Race loser in an Aesop fable : HARE
“The Tortoise and the Hare” is perhaps the most famous fable attributed to Aesop. The cocky hare takes a nap during a race against the tortoise, and the tortoise sneaks past the finish line for the win while his speedier friend is sleeping.

29. Fur wraps : STOLES
A stole is a lady’s clothing accessory, a narrow shawl. It can be made of quite light decorative material, or it can be heavier especially if made of fur.

32. It's usually behind a viola in an orchestra : OBOE
The oboe is perhaps my favorite of the reed instruments. The name "oboe" comes from the French "hautbois" which means "high wood". When you hear an orchestra tuning before a performance you'll note (pun intended!) that the oboe starts off the process by playing an "A". The rest of the musicians in turn tune to that oboe's "A".

36. Flexible Flyers, e.g. : SLEDS
“Flexible flyer” is now a generic term for a steel runner sled that can be steered with the feet. The original Flexible Flyer was patented in 1889.

37. Present time in England? ... or a hint to each set of shaded squares : BOXING DAY
Boxing Day is a holiday observed in some parts of the world, for example in the UK, Ireland and Canada. Boxing Day is the day after Christmas, and is traditionally when servants and tradespeople would be given gifts known as “Christmas boxes”.

50. Soviet premier Khrushchev : NIKITA
Soviet Premier Nikita Khrushchev only ever made two visits to the United States. The second visit was in September 1960 without an invitation, when he appointed himself temporary head of the USSR delegation to the United Nations. The US responded to his unannounced visit by limiting his travel to the island of Manhattan and visits to a Soviet-owned estate on Long Island. During one of the debates at the UN, Khrushchev became outraged at a statement made by the Filipino delegate who called the Soviets two-faced for decrying colonialism while forcibly dominating and occupying Eastern Europe. Khrushchev demanded the right to reply immediately, and when the Filipino delegate refused to yield, the Soviet leader famously took off his shoe and began to pound it on his desk.

52. Caviars : ROES
“Caviar” is the roe of a large fish that has been salted and seasoned, and especially the roe of a sturgeon. Beluga caviar comes from the beluga sturgeon, found primarily in the Caspian Sea. It is the most expensive type of caviar in the world. 8 ounces of US-farmed beluga caviar can be purchased through Amazon.com for just over $850, in case you’re feeling peckish …

58. Lobster ___ diavolo (Italian dish) : FRA
Fra diavolo is a spicy sauce used for pasta and seafood, usually made with chili peppers in a tomato base. The name “Fra diavolo” translates to “Brother devil”. The sauce may be named for the Italian revolutionary Michele Pezza who was also known as Fra Diavolo.

62. On the ___ (fleeing) : LAM
To be “on the lam” is to be in flight, to have escaped from prison. “On the lam” is American slang that originated at the end of the 19th century. The word “lam” also means to “beat” or “thrash”, as in “lambaste”. So “on the lam” might derive from the phrase “to beat it, to scram”.

63. Literary critic Broyard : ANATOLE
Anatole Broyard was a writer and critic, and for fifteen years wrote daily book reviews for “The New York Times”.

64. Actress Thurman : UMA
Uma Thurman started her working career as a fashion model, at the age of 15. She appeared in her first movies at 17, with her most acclaimed early role being Cécile de Volanges in 1988’s “Dangerous Liaisons”. Thurman’s career really took off when she played the gangster’s “moll” in Quentin Tarantino’s “Pulp Fiction” in 1994. My favorite of all Thurman’s movies is “The Truth About Cats & Dog’s”, a less acclaimed romcom released in 1996. She took a few years off from 1998 until 2002, doing very little work in favor of motherhood. It was Tarantino who relaunched her career, giving her the lead in the “Kill Bill” films.

66. Bruno Mars or Freddie Mercury : POP STAR
Bruno Mars is a singer-songwriter from Honolulu who has been active in the music business since 2006.

Freddie Mercury was a British singer-songwriter who was lead singer for the rock group Queen. Mercury wrote many of Queen’s hits, including “Bohemian Rhapsody”, “Somebody to Love”, “Don’t Stop Me Now” and “We Are the Champions”. Mercury’s real name was Farrokh Bulsara, and he was born to Parsi parents in Zanzibar (now part of Tanzania) in East Africa. He grew up mainly in India, and arrived in England at the age of 17 when his family had flee from the Zanzibar Revolution.

67. Some PCs : HPS
The giant multinational called HP (originally Hewlett-Packard) was founded in 1939 with an investment of $538, in a one-car garage in Palo Alto, California by Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard. The company name would have been Packard-Hewlett if Dave Packard had won a coin toss!

68. The "p" in m.p.g. : PER
Miles per gallon (mpg)

70. Stockholm's home: Abbr. : SWE
Stockholm is the capital of Sweden and most populous city in the country. Over one fifth of all Swedish residents live in Stockholm.

71. U.S.P.S. assignment: Abbr. : RTE
The US Postal Service (USPS) is a remarkable agency in many ways. For starters, the government’s right and responsibility to establish the Post Office is specifically called out in Article One of the US constitution. Also, the first postmaster general was none other than Benjamin Franklin. And, the USPS operates over 200,000 vehicles, which is the largest vehicle fleet in the world.

Down
1. Sushi bar finger food : EDAMAME
Edamame is a simple dish made of immature soybeans still in the pod. The pods are boiled and then salted before serving, usually as a snack or side dish. The name “edamame” translates as “twig bean”.

2. Country whose currency, RUBLES, is almost an anagram of its name : BELARUS
The Republic of Belarus is a landlocked country in Eastern Europe, located east of Poland and north of Ukraine. Belarus didn’t exist as an entity until the Russian Revolution when it was created as one of the Soviet Socialist Republics (SSR) that made up the USSR. The Republic of Belarus was formed soon after the USSR dissolved in 1990, but unlike many of the former Soviet Republics, Belarus has retained many of the old Soviet policies. Alexander Lukashenko is the country’s president and he believes in state ownership of the economy. Belarus and Russia have formal agreements in place that pledge cooperation.

The ruble (also “rouble”) is the unit of currency in Russia, as well as several other countries of the former Soviet Union. One ruble is divided into one hundred kopecks (also “kopeks”).

3. St. John the ___ : BAPTIST
John the Baptist is regarded by some Christians as the forerunner of Jesus. Early in his life, Jesus was a disciple or follower of John, and is was John who baptized Jesus.

4. ___ Antilles : LESSER
The Antilles islands are divided into two main groups, the Greater Antilles and the Lesser Antilles. The Greater Antilles includes the islands of Cuba, Jamaica, Hispaniola and Puerto Rico. The Lesser Antilles are made up of the Leeward Islands, the Windward Islands and the Leeward Antilles, and lie just north of Venezuela.

5. Pennsylvania city or the lake it's on : ERIE
Erie is a city in the very north of Pennsylvania, right on the southern shore of Lake Erie. The city takes its name from the Erie Native American tribe that resided in the area. Erie is nicknamed the Gem City, a reference to the “sparkling” Lake Erie.

6. Bygone point-to-point communication : TELEX
Telex grew out of the world of the telegraph. What Telex brought to telegraphy was the ability to route messages. Instead of having to talk to an operator to route a particular message to the intended party, the user of a telex could route the message directly to another telex machine by way of a rotary dial, very similar to that on a telephone.

8. Gossipy sorts : YENTAS
Yenta (also "Yente") is actually a female Yiddish name. In Yiddish theater "yenta" came to mean a busybody, gossip.

12. Like the Venus de Milo : ARMLESS
The famous “Venus de Milo” is so named as she was discovered in the ruins of the ancient city of Milos, on the Aegean island of the same name. I’ve been lucky enough to see the statue, in the Louvre in Paris, and was surprised at how large it is (6 ft 8 in tall).

24. Naval engineers : SEABEES
The Seabees are members of the Construction Battalions (CB) of the US Navy, from which the name "Seabee" originates. There's a great 1944 movie called "The Fighting Seabees" starring John Wayne that tells the story of the birth of the Seabees during WWII. The Seabees’ official motto is “Construimus. Batuimus”, Latin for “We build. We fight.” The group’s unofficial motto is “Can Do!”

26. Massachusetts' Mount ___ College : HOLYOKE
Mount Holyoke College is a private school for women located in South Hadley, Massachusetts. It was founded as Mount Holyoke Female Seminary in 1834 as the sister school to Andover Seminary.

28. Chi-town squad : SOX
The Chicago White Sox Major League Baseball team was established in Chicago in 1900 and originally was called the White Stockings. The name was changed because the abbreviation “Sox” for “Stockings” was regularly used in newspaper headlines.

30. Airport screening grp. : TSA
The TSA is the Transportation Security Administration, the agency that employs the good folks that check passengers and baggage at airports.

34. Yoko who loved Lennon : ONO
John Lennon and Yoko Ono married at the height of the Vietnam War in 1969. The couple decided to use the inevitable publicity surrounding their wedding and honeymoon to promote peace in the world. They honeymooned in the Presidential Suite of the Amsterdam Hilton, inviting the world’s press to join them and to witness their “bed-in”. They spent the week talking about peace, and an end to war. The marriage and bed-in is chronicled by the Beatles in their song “The Ballad of John and Yoko”.

38. C.I.A. precursor : OSS
The Office of Strategic Services (OSS) was formed during WWII in order to carry out espionage behind enemy lines. A few years after the end of the war the OSS functions were taken up by a new group, the Central Intelligence Agency that was chartered by the National Security Act of 1947.

39. Mafia big : DON
Apparently “Cosa Nostra” is the real name for the Italian Mafia. “Cosa Nostra” translates as “our thing” or “this thing of ours”. The term first became public in the US when the FBI managed to turn some members of the American Mafia. The Italian authorities established that “Cosa Nostra” was also used in Sicily when they penetrated the Sicilian Mafia in the 1980s. The term “mafia” seems to be just a literary invention that has become popular with the public.

41. Use for an attic or the cloud : STORAGE
An attic or loft is a room or space located below the roof of a building. The term “attic” is a shortened form of “attic story”, the uppermost story or level of a house. This term “attic story” originally applied to a low, decorative level built on top of the uppermost story behind a building’s decorative facade. This use of decoration at the top of buildings was common in ancient Greece, and was particularly important in the Attica style. That Attica style was so called because it originated in the historical region of Attica that encompassed the city of Athens. And that’s how our attics are linked to ancient Greece.

In the world of computing, when one operates “in the cloud”, one’s files and key applications are not stored on one’s own computer, but rather are residing “in the cloud”, on a computer somewhere out on the Internet. I do 90% of my computing in the cloud. That way I don’t have to worry about backing up files, and I can operate from any computer if I have to …

54. Tour de France stage : ETAPE
“Étape” is the French word for stage, as in a “stage” in the Tour de France. It is used in English military circles to describe where troops halt overnight, but can also describe the section of the march itself. So, a march can be divided into stages, into étapes.

Back in the late 1800s, long-distance cycle races were used as promotional events, traditionally to help boost sales of newspapers. These races usually took place around tracks, but in 1902 the backers of the struggling sports publication “L’Auto” decided to stage a race that would take the competitors all around France. That first Tour de France took place in 1903, starting in Paris and passing through Lyon, Marseilles, Bordeaux, Nantes and then back to Paris.

55. Martial ___ (judo and others) : ARTS
“Martial arts” are various fighting traditions and systems used in combat or simply to promote physical well-being. The term ultimately derives from Latin and means “Arts of Mars”, a reference to Mars, the Roman god of war.

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For the sake of completion, here is a full listing of all the answers:
Across
1. Go out, as the tide : EBB
4. Permit : LET
7. Reply to a captain : AYE
10. Brewpub offering, for short : IPA
13. Org. that targets traffickers : DEA
14. Raised, as a building : ERECTED
16. Partner of neither : NOR
17. Mountain on which you might yodel : ALP
18. Stockpiling, in a way, as feed : SILOING
19. Letters in a personals ad : SWM
20. Gymnastics floor cover : MAT
21. Directive for additional information : SEE NOTE
22. Cartoon pic : CEL
23. Get out of bed : ARISE
25. TV warrior princess : XENA
26. Race loser in an Aesop fable : HARE
27. Reflective sorts : MUSERS
29. Fur wraps : STOLES
31. This: Sp. : ESTA
32. It's usually behind a viola in an orchestra : OBOE
36. Flexible Flyers, e.g. : SLEDS
37. Present time in England? ... or a hint to each set of shaded squares : BOXING DAY
40. Lispers' banes : ESSES
43. Scrubbed, as a NASA mission : NO-GO
44. Be ___ equal footing : ON AN
48. Bear witness (to) : ATTEST
50. Soviet premier Khrushchev : NIKITA
52. Caviars : ROES
53. Try, as a case : HEAR
57. Track events : MEETS
58. Lobster ___ diavolo (Italian dish) : FRA
59. Hit pay dirt : GET RICH
61. "You ___!" ("Absolutely!") : BET
62. On the ___ (fleeing) : LAM
63. Literary critic Broyard : ANATOLE
64. Actress Thurman : UMA
65. Get older : AGE
66. Bruno Mars or Freddie Mercury : POP STAR
67. Some PCs : HPS
68. The "p" in m.p.g. : PER
69. Ram's mate : EWE
70. Stockholm's home: Abbr. : SWE
71. U.S.P.S. assignment: Abbr. : RTE

Down
1. Sushi bar finger food : EDAMAME
2. Country whose currency, RUBLES, is almost an anagram of its name : BELARUS
3. St. John the ___ : BAPTIST
4. ___ Antilles : LESSER
5. Pennsylvania city or the lake it's on : ERIE
6. Bygone point-to-point communication : TELEX
7. Suffix with valid : -ATION
8. Gossipy sorts : YENTAS
9. Border : EDGE
10. Proportional to the surroundings : IN SCALE
11. Motorized : POWERED
12. Like the Venus de Milo : ARMLESS
15. Summer treat that melts in the sun : CONE
24. Naval engineers : SEABEES
26. Massachusetts' Mount ___ College : HOLYOKE
28. Chi-town squad : SOX
30. Airport screening grp. : TSA
33. Container for dirty clothes : BIN
34. Yoko who loved Lennon : ONO
35. Common ingredient in pasta : EGG
38. C.I.A. precursor : OSS
39. Mafia big : DON
40. Batting helmet part : EARFLAP
41. Use for an attic or the cloud : STORAGE
42. Ship with smokestacks : STEAMER
45. Theologian Reinhold who wrote the Serenity Prayer : NIEBUHR
46. Try : ATTEMPT
47. Ilie who won both the U.S. and French Opens : NASTASE
49. What meditators try to live in : THE NOW
51. Cry upon arriving : I'M HERE!
54. Tour de France stage : ETAPE
55. Martial ___ (judo and others) : ARTS
56. Violent protests : RIOTS
59. Stare slack-jawed : GAPE
60. Part of a wolf or a lobster : CLAW


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About This Blog

This is the simplest of blogs.

I do the New York Times puzzle online every evening, the night before it is published in the paper. Then, I "Google & Wiki" the references that puzzle me, or that I find of interest. I post my findings, along with the solution, as soon as I am done, usually well before the newsprint version becomes available.

About Me

The name's William Ernest Butler, but please call me Bill. I grew up in Ireland, but now live out here in the San Francisco Bay Area. I am retired, from technology businesses that took our family all over the world.

I try to answer all emails, so please feel free to email me at bill@paxient.com.

Crosswords and My Dad

I worked on my first crossword puzzle when I was about 6-years-old, sitting on my Dad's knee. He let me "help" him with his puzzle almost every day as I was growing up. Over the years, Dad passed on to me his addiction to crosswords. Now in my early 50s, I work on my Irish Times and New York Times puzzles every day. I'm no longer sitting on my Dad's knee, but I feel that he is there with me, looking over my shoulder.

This blog is dedicated to my Dad, who passed away at the beginning of this month.

Bill
January 29, 2009

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